WHO: Global Action Plan represents a historic commitment to advancing collective action and accelerating progress towards the SDGs.
"Good health is one of humanity’s most valued assets. It is key to advancing sustainable development - to end poverty, promote peaceful and inclusive societies and protect the environment. This puts the health goal (SDG 3) right at the centre of the entire 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development," - says the WHO in its Summary to the Global Action Plan for healthy lives and well-being for all, a commitment signed by 11 heads of the world’s leading health and development organizations last year.
New stakeholders join the partnership and, to date, twelve global leading health and development organizations (Gavi, GFF, Global Fund, UNAIDS, UNDP, UNFPA, UNICEF, Unitaid, UN Women, WFP, WHO, and the World Bank) are exploring new ways of working together to accelerate progress towards the health-related SDG targets. Further developments will be presented in September on High-Level
Political Forum for Sustainable Development.
"The Global Action Plan for healthy lives and well-being for all" has set new standards for global solidarity, international cooperation and recognized the centrality of human rights to sustainable development. It seeks to: (i) leverage the full potential of the multilateral system and to more effectively support the countries in achieving the SDGs; (ii) optimize the impact of Global effort at all levels, by improving the way the world’s leading health organizations set priorities, invest, programme, measure progress and hold ourselves accountable; (iii) align financing and resource mobilization approaches and strengthen provision of global public goods for health to ensure sustainability.
The work on drafting Global Action Plan was initiated at the request of Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo of Ghana, Prime Minister Erna Solberg of Norway with support from United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres.
Although the Global Plan "has forged new ways to leverage the power of civil society and the private sector and generated innovative modalities and powerful technologies to address complex global health issues", its framework was drafted solely by the institutions themselves, without the participation of civil society or other sectors.
On April 30, a one-day consultation with "affected communities, civil society organizations and other non-state actors", which follows the UN General Assembly multi-stakeholder hearing on Universal Health Coverage (UHC), will take place. It will focus on civil society and community engagement in implementing Global Action Plan and on cross-cutting areas where collective action has the potential to accelerate progress towards the health-related SDGs. In the latter case, the WHO underscores that "an extensive body of scholarship shows that health and well-being are shaped by the conditions ("health determinants") in which people are born, grow, live, work, and age – and these conditions are shaped in turn by social, economic, political, cultural, environmental and other factors (including policy choices or lack thereof). Consequently, the right to health and the responsibility for health extends far beyond the health sector and requires multi-stakeholder responses that are grounded in human rights and give due attention to primary prevention". Such an approach to health is a turning point in understanding what needs to be done in order to achieve SDG3 and other health-related targets.
New developments in approaches to Global health represent an extremely interesting field of work and research that covers new modalities of international cooperation, investments, development assistance, R&D and access to medicines, etc. Please, see main discussions around the Global plan here We encourage you to participate in our LLM course in Global Health.